Winter Gardens, Portland

Hoyt Arboretum  2/15/2019

Two hours with no rain – we took a walk to the Winter Garden in Hoyt Arboretum, Washington Park. (Hike #9, 2 miles, 200 feet)

 

We saw more blooming witch hazel near the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial:

Crystal Springs   2/17/2019

A dry day – we met friends at Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden, and walked all around the lakes and garden paths. We then crossed the road and walked along Crystal Springs Creek through Reed Canyon on the Reed College campus. (Hike#10, 3 miles, 150 feet).

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Bridge at the north end of the gardens near the entrance.

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Winter plants were blooming, though nothing like the riot of color during rhododendron and azalea season.

Water birds and reflections:

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Crystal Springs Creek trail in Reed Canyon:

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The bicycle/pedestrian bridge across the canyon.

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Walking east along Reed Canyon.

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A great blue heron near the marsh.

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The spring inlet on the east end of campus.

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The lake on the west end of campus.

Cross Stitch

I mounted the Jane Austen House Cross Stitch on foam board using sequin pins and a few stitches at the corners. The piece is now hanging on my wall!

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Jane Austen’s House in Chawton, May 2018. I realize now the cross stitch kit view is the side facing the garden, not the street front.

Knitting

I found buttons for my Brioche Headscarf, and have worn it!

 

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Lewis River Waterfalls, a hat finish, and snow in Pdx

January 31, 2019  Moulton Falls, Bells Mountain trail, and Lucia Falls, Washington

Our first time hiking here. We have passed through on our way to Silver Star Mountain in the summer, and noted the crowds enjoying the swimming holes along the Lewis River near Battleground, Washington. Today we stopped to see the waterfalls in the off season, and to hike up the nearby Bells Mountain trail for a view of Mt St Helens.

The rails to trails path along the Lewis River goes over this beautiful bridge, the East Fork High Bridge, which is apparently a popular jumping spot in summer.

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Downstream from the bridge.

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Upstream from the bridge.

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Looking down…

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My shadow self portrait.

Up the Bells Mountain trail – about 1000 feet up in 1.5 miles, so a good work out.

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Uphill through ferns and second growth forest…

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Until we cross a clear cut area, and the view to Mt St Helens opens up.

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Ice on the trail

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Lunch time view – across the Lewis River area to Mt St Helens.

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Passing Moulton Falls on the return hike

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Nearby Yacolt Falls

And Lucia Falls:

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Total for the day:  6.7 miles, 1100 feet, hike #7.

Knitting

I finished my Brioche Watch Cap, after having to buy an extra skein of Berocco Millifiore yarn, just in time for snow in Portland.

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Neighborhood, 2/5/2019

Snow…

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And a view of Mt St Helens and the Ross Island and Tilikum Crossing Bridges from the OHSU eighth floor waiting room. Latest follow up results are all good!

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1/29/2019

 

White River, first crocus

1/24/2019 White River Snowshoe, Mt Hood, OR

We started in mist with promise of sun breaking through. As we walked up the snow covered braid plain of the White River, the glowing peak of Mt Hood showed in silhouette, then in clarity against clear blue sky.

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Looking back to the start point, fog lifting.

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Clear blue skies over Mt Hood.

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We hiked up onto the ridge and continued toward the mountain.

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Approaching Boy Scout Ridge, near our lunch stop.

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Lunch stop view point. A large group was already there, and the mountain peak was glowing ethereally as the sun came in through the clouds.

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Lunch view.

Return down the White River, high clouds forming.

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Tree shadows on the snowy moraine surface.

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Last look back at Mt Hood.

(Hike # 5, 3.3 miles, 750 feet)

Winter Bulbs Blooming

The first snowdrop and crocus bulbs have opened in the garden this week.dsc01372img_1836

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Pink and blue striped sky, half moon hanging above. From January 12, 2019.

Memaloose Hills Hike, and Christmas (18-59)

Memaloose Hills Hike, Oregon 12/27/2018

We went east through the gorge again to the sunny Memaloose Hills, and walked 3.2 miles, 600 feet, through the dormant winter landscape. (Hike #65 for 2018). This area is known for abundant wildflowers in spring.

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View north, with a peak at Mt Adams, from the upper trailhead on old highway 30.

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Ponderosa bark

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Trail up to the lower viewpoint.

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Chatfield Hill – our upper destination

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Dan heading up Chatfield Hill in the dormant winter.

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Same view in springtime….

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View to the east and lower viewpoint.

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View to the west from the top

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Northern view toward Mt Adams

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Mt Adams

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Mt Hood

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An apple tree and Mt Adams, on the return hike.

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Apple tree

Dalles Dam

Another hiker reported seeing bald eagles at the Dalles Dam, so we drove to the Visitor Center to see them. We walked some of the paths in that area and saw interesting views of the infrastructure, but no bald eagles.

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Under the freeway bridge

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Looking toward the dam

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A dusting of snow in the hills

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Mt Hood in the distance

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Zooming in – Mt Hood and The Dalles.

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Bald eagles should be here

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Fishing platforms

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Another westward view in the low winter light.

Driving Landscape Views

I snapped photos from the freeway as we drove back through the gorge. There are great views of our hiking spots on the Washington side of the Columbia River, and I thought I did fairly well at freeway-speed photography!

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Lyle Cherry Orchard

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Lyle, Washington

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Catherine Creek

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Rowland Wall

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The slope above Coyote Wall

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Coyote Wall

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Coyote Wall

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Snow dusting the black-fringed cliffs above Cascade Locks

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Corbett Point

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Closer view of Vista House

Knitting

I knit a star ornament for my friend who has made the costumes for a local production of Mary Poppins, I finally finished seaming the Ivy Cardigan, and I finished another round washcloth.

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Mary Poppins Star

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Ivy Cardigan

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Wash cloth

Christmas

Lovely quiet Christmas with family and friends.

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Our tree.

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My only new ornament – from the Jane Austen Museum in Bath, England.

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Viburnum in my garden

 

 

A Crisp Fall Day at Catherine Creek, WA (18-48)

Catherine Creek Arch Trail, October 27, 2018  (#59)

We walked a loop above the arch and part way up Tracy Hill, then dropped down into the oak and big leaf maple-lined canyon in front of the arch. Windless day, river like glass, slanting sun through the clouds enhancing the fall colors.

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First stop near the trail head – looking across the Columbia River to the fruit orchards east of Mosier, Oregon.

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Our path along the far side of the canyon.

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Walking upward toward Tracy Hill.

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Looking over dry flower heads back to the river.

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Lunch view from the knob just north of the arch.

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Lunch view to the eastern gorge, Rowena Plateau and Memaloose Island.

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From our high point on Tracy Hill the lowest shoulders of Mt Hood can be seen under the clouds.

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Heading down to Catherine Creek.

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Orange oak trees, yellow big leaf maple trees.

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The pinnacles of Catherine Creek.

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We walk by the Arch….DSC00058DSC00062DSC00065

And continue our way back to the trail head, feeling refreshed, before heading back to the rest of our rainy weekend in Portland. 3 miles, 600 feet.

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On our way to the hike today, we stopped at the Women’s Forum Viewpoint on the Historical Columbia River Highway to look at the view of Vista House, Beacon Rock and beyond.

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Knitting

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The back and one and a half front panels of the Ivy Cardigan.

Fall Colors at Home

Steigerwald Lake, WA (18-44)

Steigerwald National Wildlife Refuge    10-7-2018

Rainy weekend. We were too early for the migrating birds, but saw foggy cliffs across the Columbia River, a few waterbirds and reflections in Gibbons Creek and Redtail Lake, late season flowers, berries and a few fall colors.   (hike#55)  4.4 miles

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Late lupine, berries, fog on the cliffs across the river.

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I always appreciate the welcoming path entrance.

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Water birds on Gibbons Creek

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Views of Vancouver Point and Reed Island from the dike path.

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The door to the art trail is closed for winter nesting season. Time for the birds to come home.

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Fish ladder

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We walked to the end of the refuge.

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Sand bars between Reed Island and the Washington shore.

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Vista House under the fog on the Oregon cliffs.

On our return walk we saw a few more birds.

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Snowy egret across the channel

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We learned from a trail steward that the refuge is planning to breach the dikes to the Columbia River to reestablish the natural flood plains and wildlife habitat, beginning sometime next year.

Knitting

I finished another round dish cloth.

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I started knitting a Fiore washcloth. I learned the picot cast on, and I am relearning stranded knitting and catching floats for this project.

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Garden

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Zinnias and peppers

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Sumac

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NE Portland changing colors. View from a walk up Alameda Ridge.

Charmouth Fossils and the Lyme Regis Cobb, with another glimpse of Jane Austen/ May 1, 2018 (18-34)

Tuesday, May 1st. We left Chawton and the bad weather behind and drove to the Dorset coast in search of fossils, views, and another peek at Jane Austen.

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Canola fields through the car window

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Canola field

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The sea comes into view

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and sheep! with lambs!

Ammonites, Charmouth Beach

Charmouth Beach is flanked by eroded cliffs that shed fossils. The Coast Heritage Center at Charmouth had excellent displays about the geology and the fossils to be found in the cliffs.

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I always appreciate a good location map.

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Geologic overview

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Large ammonite

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We didn’t see any of these, but we didn’t stay very long.

We had timed our visit to coincide with low tide. We walked both the east and west beaches.

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Walking down to the west beach; Lyme Regis in the distance.

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Beach huts

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Shale cliffs along the west beach

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Lots of beach glass in the sand

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Walking back toward the River Char.

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One of Her Majesty’s swans near the bridge over the river.

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Dan walking along the east beach

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Dan with his camera

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Low tide

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The cliffs above the fossil beach.

With a tip from a local collector, I learned to spot the cylinders of belemnites, and spirals of pyritized ammonites.

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A bit of pyritize ammonite in the sand – about a half inch long.

I kept just a few tiny bits for my collection, and otherwise enjoyed a beautiful beach day.

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Bits of beach glass and rock – the little snail shell is about half an inch long.

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Bits of belemnites and ammonites, plus a small polished ammonite I bought at the shop near the beach.

Lyme Regis

In nearby Lyme Regis, we checked into a B&B on the hill above town, then walked down the path to the seafront. There was a great view over the coastline – where we had been in Charmouth, and where we wanted to go on the Cobb.

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Lyme Regis

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Lyme Regis Harbor and Cobb

The Cobb is the local name for the curved manmade breakwater around the harbor.

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The walk along the Cobb has been immortalized by Jane Austen in her novel Persuasion.  Teenager Louisa Musgrave flirted with Captain Wentworth by having him jump her down from the steps on the Cobb – could have been these steps,

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The first set of Cobb steps – not too scary….

these steps,

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The second set of Cobb steps

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A little more precarious…

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Looking down from the top

or these steps.

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The third set of Cobb steps

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The pavement at the bottom was equally hard when she jumped too soon, landed on her head, and was taken up lifeless. She recovered slowly with the help of a different sea captain, learned to appreciate poetry and curb her impulsiveness, and left Captain Wentworth free to marry our heroine Anne by the end of the story. Jane Austen lived here in Lyme Regis for a time, and must have walked along the Cobb, maybe even seen a boisterous teen be jumped down the steps.

We walked along the Cobb, on the lower, wind shielded side, to the end. I went up the steps to see the view, but the wind and sea spray made staying on the high path feel unsafe.

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Looking west from the top of the Cobb

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Upper Cobb views

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From the far end of the lower Cobb we looked back across the harbor to the town and to Charmouth beach where we had been earlier today.

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The far end of the Cobb path

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Looking back to Lyme Regis

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Looking across to Charmouth

After retracing our steps, we walked around the shops and gardens near the Cobb, including the rather run down Jane Austen tribute garden.

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An interesting old door

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Slate tiles

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Persuasion gift shop

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Later, we went to the lovely Harbour Inn for a delicious early birthday dinner for Dan. I had the gurnard, a local fish, and he had the vegetarian special.

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As we walked back up the hill after dinner, we took in the views again, punctuated by silhouettes of the charming ammonite light posts.

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The Cobb

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In the morning we set off for Fowey on the southern coast of Cornwall, where we had reserved a cottage for a four day stay.

Lan Su Chinese Garden, Portland, OR (18-33)

August 6, 2018

One last garden visit with my sister: We spent a morning strolling through this peaceful setting, a haven of tranquility surrounded by bustling Old Town in the heart of Portland. The Lan Su Garden, modeled after 16th century Suzhou-style Chinese gardens, was assembled by Chinese artisans in China and reassembled in Portland in 2000.

The entrance garden sets the tone –

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We walked through the portal to the lily ponds beyond.

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Blooming water lilies and colorful koi are visually captivating.

Paths through the garden wend through outdoor rooms and intricately carved and ornamented buildings.

An art exhibit displayed exotic and ordinary biota fashioned from clay.

In another room, we drew fortune sticks, and then found our numbered fortunes in a drawer.

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My hard working teacher sister had number 6. I am lucky to be her sister, and lucky about many other things, so I felt good about pulling number 38.

Another path leads by a waterfall grotto and views of a different kind of blooming lotus:

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The paths are made of patterned stone – each stone carefully placed. Some remind me of quilting patterns.

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Windows are also patterned beautifully.

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We stopped in the tea room for some delicious iced tea and almond cookies.

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Tea room

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View from the tea room, city rooftops beyond the garden

Back in the entrance way for a parting view, including the dragon fish on the roof.

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Afterward, we paid a short visit to nearby Powell’s City of Books – she found a title she was looking for, and I saw this beautifully covered collection of science and  math books.

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Crafting:

I have turned the heel on my second Cornwall sock and so am racing toward the toe and contemplating what to knit next…

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My daughter returned to college in Ohio, leaving me one of her latest creations as a  parting gift.

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James, the sock monkey

Once again no hike this week – we were trying for Burnt Lake on Friday, but it was sooo hot, and the air still smoky, and many dominoes fell out of place so we abandoned that trip. It might be a good fall hike.

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One of the new bowls I bought for my birthday.

Gardens of Eugene, Oregon (18-32)

August 4th and 5th, 2018

I spent lots of time in gardens while visiting family and celebrating my birthday in Eugene last weekend.

Owen Rose Garden

We took a slow lap around the still blooming rose beds.

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View across the Willamette River

Dahlias galore!

Family members have been curating this backyard garden since the early 1980’s, and it is one of my favorite places in the world.

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Side entry

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So many flowers, especially dahlias right now:

Late summer veggies and fruit:

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garden dog

Hendricks Park

We took an evening stroll along the roads and tree-lined paths.

Serenity Garden with Buddha

Another peaceful family garden has a new statue.

Around town

We visited several fine restaurants (Chapala, Ta Ra Rin Thai, McMenamins, and Prince Pucklers Ice Cream) and shopping  areas (5th St Market, Saturday Market and both branches of Hiron’s).

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Looking down on Saturday Market

We walked through Washburne Park where the One More Time Around Marching Band had just finished a show. We saw a trombone player wearing mardi gras beads and a rubber chicken on his head. The sun was setting blood red through the wild fire smoke haze.

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Birthday Cake and More Flowers

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Cascade Lakes Weekend & ‘Tour de Craft’/Week 2 (18-30)

We love hiking in the Three Sisters Wilderness area just west of Bend, Oregon, and so planned a weekend of hikes. Our daughter wanted to join Dan to hike to the top of South Sister, and one of our sons decided to join them at the last minute. Dan and I drove out Wednesday evening. The ‘kids’ joined us Thursday evening, then returned home after the Friday hike. It was hot everywhere, but we had some beautiful hikes through summer meadows.

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A weekend of GPS tracks.

Green Lakes    Thursday 7/19/2018  (Hike#42)

My choice for Thursday was to hike into the Green Lakes basin between South Sister and Broken Top. It is a lovely hike along Fall Creek. The first two miles are through partially shady forest, with numerous waterfalls and cataracts to look down upon.

Eventually South Sister comes into view above the trees.

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South Sister; true summit behind Hodge Crest.

The upper trail is bound to the west by a wall-like volcanic flow studded with large chunks of shiny obsidian that glint in the sunlight.

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After two switchbacks, the remainder of the trail is lined with blooming alpine riparian plants – so pleasant to walk along that I was able to ignore the sun and the gradual climb.

Once into the Green Lakes Basin, the looming Broken Top and a view of the Hodge Crest of South Sister, as well as a peek at the top of Middle Sister to the north, surround the stunning very cold Green Lakes.

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Broken Top beyond the southernmost Green Lake

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South Sister

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Just the top of Middle Sister on the right skyline

We rested in the shade for a while, first with a view of Broken Top,

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Lunch view of Broken Top

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Zooming in…

then with a view of South Sister. From this viewpoint we can only see the Hodge Crest, which is about 300 feet lower than the true summit.

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South Sister

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Zooming in

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Zooming in more

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Artsy view with tree roots

The meadow flowers that grow on the moraine-like surface of the Green Lakes basin showed me a couple of new flowers I hadn’t seen before.

So many flowers in the meadows:

And, for the first time, I spotted a floating rock (pumice) in the wild. We used to float pumice in Intro Geology labs many years ago. Of course it must be a common occurrence in this volcanic landscape where the surface is speckled with pumice stones, but this was a first sighting for me.

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Floating pumice in Green Lake, Broken Top beyond.

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Floating pumice rock

Critters: We saw a frog in one of the creeks, and Dan was photobombed by a butterfly he was trying to photograph:

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frog

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butterfly

We retraced our steps back to the trailhead. The total for the day, 9.2 miles/1200 feet was the longest I have hiked this spring. The elevation rise on this hike is very gradual, so I found I could manage. I am glad my body cooperated today after the fail last week. It was not quite as hot here, and there was a breeze that helped.

Spa Day/Dan and Brian climb South Sister 7/20/2018

Two of our children accompanied Dan up the grueling trail (5000 feet/12miles round trip) to the top of South Sister (elevation 10,358′). I hiked part of this trail in 2015 – about 4000 feet and ten miles of it. I got to the point where I was looking over at the top of Lewis Glacier, about 1000 feet below the summit.

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2015 – My view from my turnaround point, 1000 feet below the summit of South Sister

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2015 – Lewis Glacier on South Sister and view to Green Lakes basin below Broken Top

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2015- Zoomed in view to Green Lakes, where we hiked yesterday.

Emily went about half way up today, but her running injury to her calf caused her to turn back, and so I got to spend part of my down time at the hotel with her. The guys made at the top:

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Brian and Dan on the top of South Sister, 7/20/2018. Middle and North Sisters to the immediate north. Beyond are several Cascade Peaks: Mts Washington, Jefferson, Hood and Adams

Todd and Sparks Lakes 7/21/2018  (Hike#43)  

Today we took two leisurely flat hikes, for a total of 3.5 miles.

Todd Lake

We had never been to Todd Lake before – the challenge here on a summer Saturday is to nab a parking space, but we got one, so we wandered slowly around this sparkling gem, views alternating to the east side of Broken Top and the northwest side of Mt Bachelor above the forests and wildflower meadows. It really was a perfect little stroll along the lakeshore with a nice breeze to cut the heat.

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Broken Top across Todd Lake

Polliwogs were swimming along the lake shore.

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Wildflowers in abundance along the southern shore

This inlet had both magenta and red-orange paintbrush –

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Wide meadows on the west side of Todd Lake had swaths of elephant head that were mostly past bloom, lots of paintbrush, trickling streams lined with flowers, and views to Mt Bachelor.

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We ate lunch near a trickling inlet with views of Mt Bachelor

As we walked into the forested north shore trail, the wildflower suite changed a bit.

Back to the starting point of the loop, Broken Top is in view again.

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SPARKS LAKE

Then we drove down the dusty road to the Roy Atkeson Trail at Sparks Lake. We walked a short way down the trail to the stunning viewpoints across lava rock and the shallow lake to South Sister and Broken Top from a slightly different, southern vantage point.  Hotter here, and fewer flowers, but still a worthwhile visit.

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South Sister and Broken Top from Sparks Lake

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Dan, South Sister

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Broken Top

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The flowers:

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Dee Wright Observatory    7/22/2018

On our drive home on Sunday, we took a side trip to McKenzie Pass to this famous lookout in the lava fields between the Three Sisters and Mt Washington.  I love the expansive views and sere landscape.

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Dee Wright Observatory (2016 photo)

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History

There is also a short trail through the lava field here, with signage about the geologic history of the McKenzie Pass area.

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A lava stairway winds to the top of the observatory with panoramic views the whole way.

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2016 photo

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North and Middle Sisters

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Northward view

The shelter at the top is also a peak finder with windows framing the significant mountains.

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Window framing North Sister (September 2016)

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Historical plaque inside the shelter

The stairs continue to the upper viewing platform above the shelter to 360 degree views.

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2016 photo

The brass peak finder at the top provides reference points in every direction:

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North and Middle Sisters

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Closer view

Belknap Craters, Mts Washington and Jefferson and points north:

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We could actually see all the way to Mt Hood today  – a little white point over the shoulder of Mt Jefferson.

In 2015 we hiked to the Belknap Craters on a windy day.

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Belknap Craters

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Closer view of the where the trail goes through the lava field.

Black Crater, to the east:

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We have experienced sunsets, moonrises, wind and thunderstorms here, and spotted wildfires in the distance. Today, as we drove the 15 miles from Sisters, we passed through the blackened landscape from the Milli fire here last year.

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Black Crater 2018, with blackened forest on the flanks.

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Black Crater, September 2016, at sunset – note the shadow of the observatory in the foreground, and the green trees on the slopes in the background.

Tour de Craft

Tour de France is getting exciting this week – the cobblestones,  Alpine stages, and change of hands of the yellow jersey. I look forward to finishing this Welcome Blanket– just the binding to go – though our central Oregon trip has cut into my craft time.

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I knit about an inch on my Cornwall sock, and added few stitches into the roof of Jane Austen’s cross stitch house.

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Garden

We ate our first ripe tomatoes this week, and we have plenty of basil.

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Ripe tomatoes

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Cucumber flowers but no fruit

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First Rudbeckia bloom!